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Today in Hockey History: Mike Modano Becomes the Highest-Scoring US-Born Player in Stanley Cup Playoff History

May 14, 2008: Dallas Stars’ superstar Mike Modano scores a powerplay goal for his 145th career playoff point, passing Chris Chelios as the highest-scoring US-born player in Stanley Cup playoff history.

After scoring an incredible 127 points in only 65 games played for the Prince Albert Raiders of the WHL in the 1987-88 season, Mike Modano was drafted 1st overall by the Minnesota North Stars in the 1988 draft.

And the Livonia, Michigan native didn’t skip a beat stepping into the NHL in the 1989-90 season, scoring 29 goals and 46 assists for a total of 75 points in 80 games his rookie season.

By just his 3rd season in the NHL Modano reached the 30-goal mark for the first time in his career, finishing the season with 33 buries and 77 points in 76 games played.

Modano established a career-high in points in his 4th season, finishing with 93 points on the season and earning his first (of nine!) NHL All-Star appearance in the 1992-93 campaign.

And in his 5th season and the first as a Dallas Star, Modano hit the 50-goal mark, the highest goal total of his career, and tied his career-high with 93-points for the season.

Not only was Modano’s speed and skill instantly recognizable, but his consistency throughout his career set him apart from most of his peers, registering 20+ goals in 16 seasons, and 30+ goals in 9 NHL seasons.

But like all the game’s greats, Stanley Cup championships are all that matters!

After winning the Presidents’ Trophy in the 1997-98 season, Modano and the Stars were devastated when they lost the Western Conference Finals 4-2 versus the eventual Stanley Cup Champs, Detroit Red Wings.

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The following season the Stars wouldn’t be denied, once against capturing the Presidents’ Trophy and this time finishing the season with Brett Hull’s controversial game 6 overtime Stanley Cup-winning goal.

Mike Modano was now a Stanley Cup Champion!

By 2007, Mike Modano was in hot pursuit of Phil Housley‘s record for most points by a US-born player in the NHL regular season.

37-year-old Mike Modano wasted no time scoring two goals in the opening period against the San Jose Sharks on November 7th, just a month into the 2007-08 NHL season to establish a new mark for US-born hockey players.

Six months and a week later, Modano set a new playoff record for US-born players, sniping a one-timer from the slot over Chris Osgood’s glove hand [see the video at the top of this post].

Mike Modano finished his career as the all-time highest-scoring US-born player in NHL history, both in the regular season and playoffs.

The Stanley Cup champion and two-time Olympian had his number retired in Dallas, was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2014, and will forever be remembered as one of the greatest American hockey players of all time.

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